grammar

<p>Is "a lot" automatically singular? Or does it depend on what "a lot" is modifying? (a lot of people * is/are *?)</p>

<p>Is there a general rule for those kinds of stuff? Like "a great number of", "a large quantity of", "a large amount of" etc?</p>

<p>Paul Ecke, flower grower and hybridizer, became known as “Mr. Poinsettia” after developing new varieties of the flower and by pioneering it as a living symbol of Christmas.</p>

<p>--> Answer is "by pioneering". Why?</p>

<p>It depends on what you are talking about. "A lot of people" is talking about the people, so you say, "a lot of people are." You also say, "a number of people are crowded around the street." However, if you are talking about the number itself, you say, "the number of people is increasing."</p>

<p>
[quote]
Paul Ecke, flower grower and hybridizer, became known as “Mr. Poinsettia” after developing new varieties of the flower and by pioneering it as a living symbol of Christmas.</p>

<p>--> Answer is "by pioneering". Why?

[/quote]

Because it is modified by "after." He became known as that after DEVELOPING something and PIONEERING something.</p>

<p>Thanks!!</p>

<p>Also, do we always need to use "who" when referring to people, or is "that" allowed?</p>

<p>You have to use "who" to refer to people. However, "whose" can refer to objects of people or of things: "I bought a pencil whose eraser was missing"; "I met a man whose uncle works in the same building as I."</p>

<p>Researchers have found that large fish are most likely to contain high levels of mercury than small fish .</p>

<p>(B) are more likely to contain high levels of mercury compared to small fish
(C) are more likely than small fish to contain high levels of mercury</p>

<p>--> I don't get it ...</p>

<p>A powerful advocate to equal rights, Belva Lockwood was twice a candidate for President long before the Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution allowed women to vote.</p>

<p>--> Is "advocate of" an idiom? And is CB not very strict in implementing past perfect tense? Because in my school we're taught that strictly speaking, "was" (in the sentence above) should be "had been"... So does CB just care about tense * consistency *?</p>

<p>
[quote]
Researchers have found that large fish are most likely to contain high levels of mercury than small fish .</p>

<p>(B) are more likely to contain high levels of mercury compared to small fish
(C) are more likely than small fish to contain high levels of mercury</p>

<p>--> I don't get it ...

[/quote]

Would you say "more than" or "more compared to"? "Than" compares two nouns here. We are comparing some attribute of large fish to that of small fish. Here is the construction:</p>

<p>Small fish are likely to contain high levels of mercury.
Large fish are more likely to contain high levels of mercury.
Therefore, large fish are more likely than small fish to contain high levels of mercury.</p>

<p>Do you agree that that is the traditional way to compare the two things? You would say, traditionally, that "I am better than you," not that "I am better compared to you." I don't know how to explain why the latter is incorrect; perhaps because there is no direct comparison. What does "compared" modify? If it modifies the noun, then the comparison isn't correct because it is supposed to be between "more likely," not "mercury." </p>

<p>
[quote]
A powerful advocate to equal rights, Belva Lockwood was twice a candidate for President long before the Nineteenth Amendment to the Constitution allowed women to vote.</p>

<p>--> Is "advocate of" an idiom? And is CB not very strict in implementing past perfect tense? Because in my school we're taught that strictly speaking, "was" (in the sentence above) should be "had been"... So does CB just care about tense consistency ?

[/quote]

If you advocate X, then you are AN advocate of X. That is generally how you form that concept. If you do something to X, then are you the "doer" (or "advocator"--not a real word, but I hope you get the point--the real word is simply "advocate") of X. It is not an idiom because the general structure is grammatical. I can't think of an example for some reason. Perhaps you could think of one.</p>

<p>There is nothing wrong with saying, "she was a candidate before 1920." We know she is not a candidate anymore. And of course the test-makers care about tense consistency. It just doesn't apply here.</p>

<p>A lot CAN be singular. However, I can't think of an example aside from: "A lot of stuff is going on."
I don't remotely know the rule for it though. I do it by ear mostly.</p>

<p>So it's always "more ... than"?</p>

<p>NEW QUESTIONS:</p>

<ol>
<li>To fear the act of impeachment and to think of it as a threat to the presidency is to be misinformed about the Constitution and ignorant of the law. </li>
</ol>

<p>--> Why is it singular?</p>

<ol>
<li>In the past, the small nation had been committed to self-managed socialism, a system under which the workers, rather than the state, own / owned most enterprises.</li>
</ol>

<p>--> Which one is it supposed to be? Do we have to follow the general tense of the sentence (i.e. past) or look at it in context (i.e. present, because technically it defines "socialism ... [a system under which the workers * own * most enterprises]". Or is this not likely to be tested?</p>

<ol>
<li>Whether or not they were successful as candidates, women such as Geraldine Ferraro and Pat Schroeder had opened / have opened the door to the election of a woman as President.</li>
</ol>

<p>--> Same principle as #2. </p>

<ol>
<li>The programmers always talked of having too much to do, but in truth their work was the least among their colleagues.</li>
</ol>

<p>--> Answer is "they had less work to do than", and BB answer explanations say that the original "doesn't make sense". That was also the explanation for all the answer choices that had superlative (least) instead of the comparative (less). Is there something special with "work"?</p>

<ol>
<li>Anita liked to watch television, of which she found the science programs especially fascinating. </li>
</ol>

<p>--> Why is "of which" wrong?</p>

<ol>
<li>Researchers tend to praise studies that agree with their own conclusions, although rarely showing kindness .</li>
</ol>

<p>--> Does "although" always call for a clause?</p>

<p>THANKS! PLEASE REPLY SOON BECAUSE MY TEST iS ON THE 5TH :(</p>

<p>Yes, it is always "more . . . than" in that context.</p>

<p>
[quote]
1. To fear the act of impeachment and to think of it as a threat to the presidency is to be misinformed about the Constitution and ignorant of the law.</p>

<p>--> Why is it singular?

[/quote]

The two infinitives ("to fear the act of impeachment" and "to think of it as a threat to the presidency") are basically the same. The writer of the sentence wants to communicate the idea better, but the writer cannot fit all of that into one infinitive, so the writer splits it into two. It still counts as a singular phrase because the acts are, for lack of a better word, simultaneous. You can refer to it as "the state of fearing . . . and thinking . . . ." Yes, there are two actions/infinitives, but they are so closely tied that they count as only 1 unit.</p>

<p>You have to put yourself in the writer's place. The second infinitive can effectively be put into parentheses: "To fear the act of impeachment (and to think of it as a threat to the presidency) is to . . . ," where the parenthetical does not affect the rest of the sentence, which includes whether "is" should stay singular or be plural. The "and" connecting the two infinitives doesn't separate them so much as tie them together.</p>

<p>
[quote]
2. In the past, the small nation had been committed to self-managed socialism, a system under which the workers, rather than the state, own / owned most enterprises.</p>

<p>--> Which one is it supposed to be? Do we have to follow the general tense of the sentence (i.e. past) or look at it in context (i.e. present, because technically it defines "socialism ... [a system under which the workers own most enterprises]". Or is this not likely to be tested?

[/quote]

It has to be in the present tense because it directly describes the system of socialism.</p>

<p>This sentence looks familiar. Where is it from? The easiest way to tell whether it is likely to be tested is to look at the source of the question. You also have to realize that the SAT doesn't exactly test you on EXACTLY the same concepts you studied in your practice exams. </p>

<p>
[quote]
3. Whether or not they were successful as candidates, women such as Geraldine Ferraro and Pat Schroeder had opened / have opened the door to the election of a woman as President.</p>

<p>--> Same principle as #2.

[/quote]

It must be "have opened" because the sentence describes the influence women have had on society TODAY. They still influence the world today; thus, you use the present perfect tense, not the past perfect tense.</p>

<p>
[quote]
4. The programmers always talked of having too much to do, but in truth their work was the least among their colleagues.</p>

<p>--> Answer is "they had less work to do than", and BB answer explanations say that the original "doesn't make sense". That was also the explanation for all the answer choices that had superlative (least) instead of the comparative (less). Is there something special with "work"?

[/quote]

No, there is nothing special about "work."</p>

<p>First of all, when you are comparing two things, you can say "less," "better," etc. When you are comparing three or more things, you can say "least," "best," etc. For example, you say, "I am the better of the two," NOT "I am the best of the two." But that rule doesn't apply to this sentence (nowhere in the sentence does it refer to two programmers).</p>

<p>Like I said before, you use "more . . . than." The same applies for "less . . . than."</p>

<p>CORRECT: X worked less than Y.
CORRECT: X had less work than Y.
CORRECT: X had less work to do than Y.
INCORRECT: X had work that was the least among Y.</p>

<p>It is also incorrect because X doesn't belong to Y. The programmers and their colleagues are distinct groups. "Least" describes traits of units within one group.</p>

<p>
[quote]
5. Anita liked to watch television, of which she found the science programs especially fascinating.</p>

<p>--> Why is "of which" wrong?

[/quote]

If you wanted to refer to "the science programs of television," then you would say," "Anita liked to watch television, the science programs of which she found especially fascinating." But this is still not the best way to word the sentence. Nobody says, "I like T.V.; the science programs of T.V. are fascinating." You don't have refer to T.V. again. Thus, you can simply say: "Anita liked to watch television. She found the science programs especially fascinating."</p>

<p>
[quote]
6. Researchers tend to praise studies that agree with their own conclusions, although rarely showing kindness .</p>

<p>--> Does "although" always call for a clause?

[/quote]

"Although" is a conjunction, so it always calls for a clause. It is similar to "because," which is also a conjunction. Both "although" and "because" can start a sentence. </p>

<p>The sentence is wrong. It should be "researchers tend to praise . . . , and they rarely show kindness." These are two independent statements, so you simply separate the two clauses with "and." The original is wrong because it uses "although." The clause following "although" does NOT disagree with the first clause, so you can't use "although." They agree, so you can just use "and."</p>

<p>thank you so much!!! questions were from BB. :)</p>